TBA HALL OF FAME - CLASS OF 2022
Native of Nashville; Bachelor of Music degree at MTSU in 1978 and the Master’s Degree in Music Education from Arkansas State University in 1979.
Pocahontas, AR Schools 1979 – 1982 (3 years)
Northwest High School, Clarksville, TN 1982 – 1991 (9 years)
Brentwood (TN) High School – 1991 – 2018 (27 years)
West Memphis High School Director of Bands / District Band Supervisor – 2018 - present
New York City “Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade” in 1995 and 2001; Fiesta Bowl National Band Championship in Phoenix, 2003; Orange Bowl, Miami, 1997; Sugar Bowl, New Orleans, 2000; Alamo Bowl, San Antonio, 2007;
Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade 2005, 2009, 2013; Honolulu, Hawaii – Waikiki Holiday Parade and Commemoration of the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor
Finalist multiple times in “Bands of America” Regional Championships in Indianapolis, St. Louis, Atlanta, Powder Springs, Georgia and Jacksonville, Alabama, and is a four-time semi-finalist in the Bands of America Grand National Championships.
MTSU Contest of Champions, Tennessee’s State Marching Band Championships:
Finalist 10 times, bronze medal in 2003 and named Reserve Grand Champion (silver medal) in 2002.
2007 – featured on country superstar Brad Paisley’s hit recording “Online.” The music video was named the Country Music Association Video of the year and the band performed live with Paisley for an audience of over 30 million viewers on ABC Television’s international broadcast of the Country Music Association Awards in November of 2007.
Performed with Kenny Chesney at LP Field during his “Brothers of the Sun Tour” with Tim McGraw in 2012.
The concert ensembles consistently receive superior ratings in concert and sight reading assessments; in 2000 started a Conductor residency program at Brentwood High School: conductors spend two days on campus for extended rehearsals, presenting a concert as the culminating event. Guest conductors have included presidents of the National Band Association and the American Bandmasters Association as well as many other regionally and nationally recognized leaders in the field.
In 2002 the Brentwood Wind Ensemble performed for the MENC-The National Association for Music Education National Conference in Nashville.
Mr. Joel L. Denton was the Director of Bands at Ooltewah High School for thirty-six years. Mr. Denton is a graduate of the University of Tennessee and has completed graduate studies at UT-Chattanooga. Under his direction, the Ooltewah Band achieved a national reputation for musical excellence. The Ooltewah Band under his direction performed in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in 2013 and 2007, as the only band in the 2011 Disney Christmas Parade on ABC, and in the 2017 Tournament of Roses Parade. The Ooltewah band was a consistent finalist at Bands of America Regional Championships being awarded multiple class championships and placements, and was a national semi-finalist on multiple occasions with several class placements.
The Ooltewah concert bands have performed at the Music for All Regional Concert Festival in 2016, the TMEA (TN) State Music Conference in 2014 and 2010, the Smoky Mountain Music Festival in 2011(Grand Concert Division Champions), and multiple other state, regional and national events through the years. At the 2015 Midwest Clinic, Mr. Denton was awarded the John Phillip Sousa Foundation Legion of Honor. He has served as Chairman of Fine Arts at Ooltewah from 1982 until his retirement and has been selected five times as the Ooltewah Teacher of the Year. The Tennessee Governor’s School for the Arts has twice honored him.
His professional affiliations include NAfME, Tennessee Music Education Association, East Tennessee School Band and Orchestra Association, Phi Beta Mu, National Band Association, American School Band Director Association, and Tennessee Bandmasters Association. Mr. Denton currently serves as Past President of the Tennessee Bandmasters Association and as the Tennessee State Chair for the National Band Association. He has served as the State Legislative Delegate and Advocacy Chair for TMEA and served as a member of the Tennessee Department of Education’s Fine Arts Student Growth Committee.
He is active as an adjudicator, clinician, and consultant working with Music for All/Bands of America, Drum Corps International, several universities and state organizations, as well as, many high school bands across the nation. Mr. Denton also works with band programs and other organizations on developing leadership and teambuilding skills. To further impact music programs with this training, Music for All invited Mr. Denton to coordinate and help create a Peer Teaching Division for the National Summer Symposium in the summer of 2017. Mr. Denton and Kerry, his wife of thirty-three years, reside in Chattanooga and have two adult children, Alex and Caroline.